A conversation with myself - about doubts, fears and negative thoughts during the Corona crisis
This post is probably my most personal blog entry here so far. It's an inner dialogue that I've been experiencing so often lately. And because I'm sure I'm not alone with my thoughts, I wanted to share them with you here. So that maybe you don't feel so alone anymore.
I'm sitting at my desk in my old childhood room in my parents' house. Three months ago I moved back here temporarily because I successfully completed my bachelor's degree in another city. What was supposed to be an exciting time with lots of travel, new impressions and all sorts of plans for the future quickly turned into a monotonous time with no travel, few new impressions and plans for the future thrown out the window. The reason: Corona.
Since the start of quarantine, I've at least cleaned out my room, renovated it a little (who has n't done that by now? ) and given my cat more cuddles than ever before - but that feels like it's about it. Of course that's not entirely true, I've done a lot more, but I still feel increasingly useless and lacking in energy. The same thoughts have been running through my head for a few days now and I seem to be having the same debate with myself day after day. It usually starts with me catching myself complaining to myself about all the things that aren't possible right now and how sad it is that 2020 looks so different than planned:
“You are angry and sad; OK. But look how well you are doing. Other people have it much more difficult; In addition to all the stress, they also have to look after their children or are facing a financial crisis. Other people go to work every day and directly expose themselves to danger, they have no choice or even like to be a helper figure. Students are being sent back to school even though the situation hasn't improved much yet, entire cities are in economic decline because tourism is down, people are losing their jobs... And you're sitting here feeling sorry for yourself, even though you actually feel the same way goes well.
On the other hand - there are ALWAYS people who have it worse than you, but there's no point in beating yourself up about it. Being angry at yourself won't get you anywhere. Quite the opposite, actually. Maintaining a positive mindset is one of the most important resources you have right now.”
And while I know that what I'm thinking is true, I start beating myself up again for not being able to stay positive. As you can see, in moments like this I find myself in a highly destructive thought cycle - which doesn't help me at all. Think, reflect, question: all of that is good. But too much of it is usually not beneficial.
“So what can I do?”
The question of all questions. Is there right or wrong here? Probably more sensible and not so useful. Or, to put it as non-judgmentally as possible: There are a whole range of things I can do. There would be the opportunity to push my thoughts away from me so that I don't have to deal with them any further. For example, by watching YouTube videos. Or from an audio book. Another option would be to talk to someone about my thoughts. But then I would immediately feel like I had to explain or justify myself. I could also go out and take a walk. Or sports. But that's somehow too tiring for me right now. Another option would be to do nothing and just sit around and let my thoughts wander...
Hmm, that doesn't sound ideal. So I do what I personally always do when I don't know what to do: meditate. I choose a guided meditation on the topic of “anxiety and stress” in the “Insight Timer” app and try to get involved in it as best I can.
Twenty minutes later I feel a lot better. Meditation helped me to let my thoughts be there without being judgmental. Now it's much quieter in my head. That feels good. At the same time, I feel the need to give free rein to my thoughts, to “speak” them somehow. I sit down at my desk, open Google Drive and start typing. What ultimately came out of it? This one.
And I really can't believe how much better I feel now that I've just put it all down on paper. As if a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. It's amazing what an impact a nonjudgmental discussion of one's own thoughts can have.
Of course, my worries, fears and doubts about the Corona issue have not disappeared into thin air. But at least I feel much more organized, relieved and relaxed. My anger is gone. And if tomorrow I catch myself stuck in the same circle of thoughts again, then I will accept that. Then I'll just do another meditation. Or write down my thoughts one more time. I'm going to do something that makes me take a step back in my mind. I will take the observer's perspective and be as loving towards myself as possible.
And the moral of the story'? My advice to you?
Today I learned (once again) that it is important to allow emotions. But also how important it is to step away from your own thoughts every now and then. To look at them as non-judgmentally as possible. That it is important to deal with your own thoughts, but not to identify with them . And also that formulating the inner dialogue can have an almost cathartic effect.
As cheesy and sentimental as it may sound, if there's one thing I want to tell you, it's this: “ You are enough, you are loved, you are not alone. Don't be so hard on yourself. ” And of course: “ Take care of yourself.” ❤️
You can find more articles on the topics of mindfulness and spirituality, the environment and sustainability, and healthy eating here .
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